A Fresno County judge on Wednesday sentenced a 22-year-old gang member to 82 years to life in prison for shooting into a crowd and killing an innocent bystander in Huron three years ago.
In announcing the sentence, Superior Court Judge Denise Whitehead said Nicolas Andres Alcala intended to kill Salvador Solis, but instead fatally shot 34-year-old Pedro Aispuro.
No one was in court to support Alcala, and he said nothing on his behalf.
Nearly a dozen relatives of Aispuro showed up to tell the judge that he was loved and well-liked in the community.
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“He was nice and cared about his family,” 12-year-old Denise Duarte wrote in a letter to the judge about her uncle.
Denise was in school Wednesday, so her mother, Maria Duarte, read the letter, which also had words for Alcala: “Unlike you, you don’t care about anything. You’re just a cold man who doesn’t deserve anything.”
After Alcala’s punishment was announced, Aispuro’s family hugged and thanked sheriff’s detective Donna Davis and prosecutor Robert Mangano.
“Justice was served,” Maria Duarte said.
You’re just a cold man who doesn’t deserve anything.
Denise Duarte, 12, said to the gang member who killed her uncle
In July, a jury found Alcala guilty of second-degree murder for fatally shooting Aispuro and guilty of the attempted murder of Solis.
During the trial, Mangano told the jury that Aispuro was shot in the back with hollow-point bullets during the early hours of June 4, 2012, on Myrtle Avenue in Huron. He died at the scene.
According to Mangano, Alcala was a Norteño gang member looking for trouble and that the Norteños have a long-running feud with the Bulldogs gang.
On the night of the shooting, Alcala and his associates were at a Huron bar asking patrons: “What do you bang?” Alcala later confronted Solis, who is an associate of the Bulldogs gang, outside the bar, Mangano said.
According to Mangano, witnesses heard Alcala say, “Trip on this fool. He’s a Bulldog.” Without warning, Alcala pulled out a gun from his waistband and fired four to six shots at Solis, but missed him. Instead, the gunfire hit Aispuro, who was minding his own business, Mangano said.
Alcala fled to Mexico with his girlfriend and her infant daughter. He was arrested by the San Diego County Sheriff’s Office in early August 2013 when he returned to California.
Alcala did not testify in his trial.
In November 2012, Alcala’s associate was sentenced to five years and four months in prison. Jaime Meza, then 22, pleaded no contest to being an accessory after the shooting and to one count of street terrorism.